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Big Bang! Rules and Tools

The annual Big Bang! Business Competition provides a forum for innovators across California to collaborate, develop and test business ideas—and compete for cash prizes. 

The 23rd annual Big Bang! Business Competition launch in October and concludes with finalist presentations and an awards ceremony in May.

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Grow your venture.

Join the UC Davis StartupTree community to expand your network—and learn about events, competitions, resources and programs on campus and beyond to help you launch your entrepreneurial journey and grow your venture.

The Ideas into Action Workshops Series will give you the knowledge and skills you need to move from concept to company—and to effectively compete in the Big Bang! Business Competition. 

Learn more about the Big Bang!

For competition details and specifics, please download:

Competition Overview and Guidelines

All Big Bang! teams must register and submit deliverables through the competition platform, Startup Tree, by the appropriate deadlines. We cannot accept emailed submissions. 

“The mentors and judges told us they believed that we are THE team to take our venture to its fullest potential. As not only student founders but first time founders as well, there is sometimes self-doubt and a sense of loneliness that comes with working so hard on this venture. Hearing that they believe in us really meant a lot."
—Leo Liu, Co-founder and CEO, Chilk

photo of three young men and a young women wearing their startup t-shirts and with laptop showing their website
Chilk won the the $10,000 Food and Agriculture Sector Award in the 2022 Big Bang! competition. Their innovation: a boba milk tea that is affordable, vegan, all-natural and with healthier alternatives to preservatives.
  • Competition Deliverables: Templates + Examples
  • Download the templates and examples below as needed.

    Round 1
    Registration and Team Member Biographies Guidelines
    • Executive Summary Guidelines
    Executive Summary Example

    Round 2
    • 2-Minute Video Pitch Guidelines
    • Customer Call Guidelines
    • Customer Call Sample Script
    • Customer Call Summary Template [DOC]
     Pitch Deck Template [PPT]  |  Pitch Deck Template [PDF]

    Round 3
    Customer Call Summary Template [DOC]
    Pitch Deck Template [PPT]  |  Pitch Deck Template [PDF]
  • Round 1: Executive Summary / Team Member Biographies
  • Round 1 requires submission of a two-page executive summary and a maximum one-page team member biography (for each team member) submitted via Startup Tree by the deadlines listed below. Refer to templates and guidelines provided.

    • Early registration deadline 1 (optional)—January 11, 2023, by noon: Receive feedback from UC Davis MBA students on your executive summary. This preliminary part of Round 1 is nonelimination.

    Round 1 Final Deadline—March 1, 2023, by noon: Teams that submitted Round 1 deliverables by the optional early deadline should update and resubmit their materials, incorporating reviewer feedback. Submissions received after the deadline will not be accepted. This is a required submission to advance to the next round. This is an elimination round.

    • External judging: March 2–March 24, 2023
    • Teams notified of results: March 24, 2023
  • Round 2:  Semifinals
  • The top teams advanced to Round 2 must submit the following deliverables via Startup Tree no later than April 6, 2023, by noon. Refer to templates and guidelines provided.
       • Two-Minute video pitch (uploaded to YouTube; YouTube link will be indicated in Startup Tree)
       • Detailed pitch deck (5–10 slides + 5 optional appendix slides)
       • Summary report of 20 customer call interviews (maximum five pages)

    Submissions received after the deadline will not be accepted. This is a required submission to advance to the next round. This is an elimination round.

    • External judging: April 7–April 20, 2023
    Teams notified of Round 2 results: April 21, 2023

  • Round 3: Finals
  • The top 16 teams advanced to Round 3 must submit the following deliverables no later than May 15, 2023, by noon. Refer to templates and guidelines provided.
      • Presentation pitch deck (10 slides + 5 optional appendix slides)
      • Additional 10 customer call summary (maximum three-page summary)

    Round 3 teams have the valuable opportunity to receive presentation feedback from multiple panels of external business and investment executives in a "dry run" practice session rotation on May 2, 2023, 4-8 p.m. The optional Dry Run Session will take place over Zoom.

    Finalist teams present to a live panel of external judges on May 17, 2023. We will announce award winners at the Big Bang! Awards Ceremony on May 23, 2023.

    All finalist teams must attend the final judging and awards ceremony in person at UC Davis. Due to COVID-19, in-person events and travel may be impacted. We remain flexible in accordance with UC Davis, city and state health guidelines.